Meet Ray Hiebert, WWII Veteran, Who Receives Care at Home from Visiting Angels of Schererville, IN

Visiting Angels of Schererville Is Happy to Provide Care at Home to Our Astounding Clients

Nearing his 94th birthday, Ray Hiebert is someone we should all take a few minutes to get to know. He has seen his fair share of ups and downs during his long life span, from living through the Great Depression to serving in the army during WWII, to falling in love with his wife of 67 years. He courageously shared a brief life history with our care at home team, reminiscing about the good ol’ days and what life was like as aCare at Home in Schererville, IN paratrooper.

Ray grew up with his parents and sister, living on Madison Street in Hammond. He spent his teenage years as a busboy, working at his sister’s bar on Sunday’s. During the Depression, he and his family often received meals from the Tiebel family. Teibel’s Family Restaurant has been in operation in Schererville since 1929. Ray shares that his father and Mr. Tiebel were good family friends. Mr. Tiebel often invited Ray to Notre Dame games, solidifying his allegiance to the team.

After high school, Ray attended Gordon Military College and graduated in May 1944. He was drafted in the army and served as a sergeant in the 82nd Airborne Division from Fort Benning, Georgia. He went on to become a paratrooper and was stationed in Oberzell, Germany, just as the war was drawing to an end. There were twenty soldiers in his squad. They were responsible for folding their own parachutes during training, so they all quickly learned how to be cautious and vigilant with their gear. Ray carried a silver dollar on him for good luck and he always looked forward to receiving letters from his parents and sister back home.

Ray likes to tell the story about a fellow soldier on his squad that locked himself in the bathroom during parachute training because he didn’t want to jump out of the plane. That soldier was soon discharged.

When he wasn’t in the air, Ray served as a German interpreter, often patrolling the streets in Germany during the curfew. In fact, it was when he was out on patrol that he met his wife, Helen. Helen and her two sisters were walking down the street when Ray stopped them to reinforce curfew. Soon after that initial run-in, Ray saw Helen and her sisters again. He worked up the courage to ask Helen to attend a dance with him, even though he had two left feet. Helen accepted, as long as her sisters came along. He shares that they had a great time together and Helen graciously taught him how to dance.

In time, Ray proposed to Helen. At the time, if you wanted to get married in Germany, you had to put your name on the bulletin board in the city hall and wait to see if anyone contested the proposal. Soon after, Ray and Helen were married in Germany. When they came back to the States, they remarried in a church in Hammond. Ray went on to work as a postmaster for the Hessville, Highland, Munster area. He and Helen built a wonderful life together, sharing 67 years as husband and wife. Helen passed away about three years ago. Ray has wonderful keepsake memories of Helen and their many years spent together.

Although you would never know it when you sit down to enjoy a conversation with Ray over a cup of coffee, one of his biggest life challenges has been overcoming his shyness. One surprising fact is that Ray has owned only three cars throughout his lifetime.

Currently, Ray enjoys staying active by playing golf at the age of 93. Weather permitting, he enjoys playing golf twice a week. Just a couple of years ago, Ray hit a hole in one! When he’s not out on the golf course, Ray enjoys playing chess online. He’s looking forward to his upcoming birthday this November when he’ll turn 94. He is excited to celebrate this particular birthday because he will have lived longer than his father.

Ray started care at home services with our home care agency in December 2016. He speaks very highly of all the home care providers that have spent time with him over the years. He looks forward to his care at home visits with his home care provider and especially enjoys when his in home caregiver makes him his favorite foods: Sloppy Joes, pot roast, and sauerkraut. He is an advocate for Visiting Angels as well, telling his family and friends to reach out to the office should they ever need care at home. Ray is a pleasure to be around. He is an example of what it means to live life to the fullest and to cherish every moment. Thank you, Ray, for your service to our country and for sharing your amazing life story with all of us.

To learn more about how care at home can change your loved one's life, please contact our home care agency at 219-500-5896 today!

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